Wood for grow boxes

I just got off the phone with a very helpful young man at my local Home Depot. I was gathering info from him on the prices of redwood, cedar and composite planking that I want to make grow boxes from. When I mentioned to him that I was going to make grow boxes he suggested that I use treated lumber, quickly adding, as if he anticipated my protest, there is no longer any arsenic used in the treating process and nothing is used that would be harmful.
I would appreciate any thoughts on this. I'm still a bit hesitant about using treated lumber for grow boxes for vegetables but it would sure save a lot of money if I could.
What do you think?
Russell
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The manufacturer still recommends wearing at least a dust mask when sawing so I guess it's not totally harmless. Steve

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If that is your yardstick for safety, try cutting WRC (Western Red Cedar) without a mask for a couple of board feet. The stuff is far harsher on the lungs IMHO. Now, I'll give you that the chemicals in treated are probably worse for you, but a dusk mask is pretty much advised for ALL wood, not just treated.
Jay
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Most woods are not good to breathe... ;-)
I had a buddy that made knives once and did a LOT of woodwork. He once showed me a list of "toxic woods" that were harmful to breathe the dust of.
It was quite extensive.
Wearing a dust mask when you cut or carve anything that raises dust that can be inhaled is not good for you.
This is a common topic of discussion on egg art lists. Eggshell dust is also very bad.

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On Wed, 16 Mar 2005 10:26:23 -0700, Russell D. wrote:

I wouldn't take the chance, use untreated wood.
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Just curious here; Has anyone tried using the new plastic decking boards for raised beds? Ken.
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Kenneth D. Schillinger wrote:

I haven't tried it but it is a good suggestion. I recently purchased a book "The Southern Garden Advisor" by Barbara Pleasant and she recommends it. That stuff should last for a very long time and is immune to termites (a big problem here). I plan on using it for my next garden bed.
Oh, btw, the new stuff is ACQ. It is teated with "Alkaline Copper Quaternary" which is copper and some sort of biocide (I'd think about that a little).
Gello.
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Russell D. wrote:

Personally, I would NOT use treated lumber for boxes where I will grow edibles. While use of CCA (Copper Chromium Arsenate) is basically banned in the USA, that doesn't mean there are no health risks associated with lumber treated with other products. Remember, the other treatments also involve poisons, like copper. You might find this USDA publication useful:
http://www.fpl.fs.fed.us/research-areas/rwu/rwu4723/index.html
In particular, click on the link in the upper right for the FAQs. At the bottom there are a bunch of other links. I found the one on the alternative types of treated wood interesting.
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Russell D. wrote:

Most of the new treated lumber is treated with alkaline copper quat (ACQ types B and D) and copper azole (CBA-A, CA-B). Yes, there safer than the old CCA treated wood, but still not something I want in my garden.
David
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Hi. Something else to think about is the fact that treated wood will still be eaten by termites after a few years anyway. It just takes a little while longer.
Cedar on the other hand will last for much longer before the little buggers will get into it. I have seen fence posts of cedar that had been used for about 10 years and they had some damage, but didn't have to be replaced. Treated landscape timbers on the other hand, were pretty well used up after a little over 4 years.
Dwayne

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